Lindsay Lohan on controversial multi-drug treatment for addicts

Newly sober Lindsay Lohan has backed out of a commitment to host a party on New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas. Reports that she would be the guest of honor at LAX nightclub were true, but she scrapped plans to be there, probably as a result of the bad publicity it was generating. Her rep tells US Weekly that “Lindsay will no longer be hosting New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas.”

Lindsay and her people might not have been the deciding force behind the issue, though. This week’s Star Magazine reports that Lindsay is under strict new contractual orders from the producers of the tango-themed film she’s working on Dare to Love Me that give guidelines meant to ensure that she doesn’t drink or do drugs. Along with stipulating that she must be under constant supervision from a sober companion and that she can’t drive, she is living in a “safe house” in LA and being treated with a controversial anti-addict drug regimen that some doctors consider dangerous and unproven:

Star can exclusively report that [Lindsay's] participation [in a controversial anti-addiction treatment] is just one of several no-nonsense clauses that she had to agree to in the contract for her new film Dare to Love Me. An insider tells Star these clauses include:

  • Submitting to regular drug and alcohol testing;
  • Being assigned a new bodyguard and 24-hour sober companion;
  • Having her movements restricted and monitored, and having visitors agree to a possible search;
  • Being forbidden to drive a car!…

    The insider tells Star that Lindsay’s contract calls for her to be stashed in the same LA “safe house” she occupied for 10 days before checking in Cirque Lodge. She will be under the care of Matthew Torrington, MD, medical director of the PROMETA Center, an outpatient clinic in Santa Monica specializing in treating alcohol, cocaine and metamphetamine addictions.

    The PROMETA system is at the center of a major controversy within the medical community. Under the program – which costs $15,000 for the one-month treatment and includes nutritional supplements as well as “psychosocial or other recovery-oriented therapy” – Lindsay would receive a specific series of intravenous and oral doses in a combination from among three drugs. They are flumazenil, a medical used to treat overdoses of benzodiazepine drugs like Xanax and Valium; hydroxyzine, used to control nausea; and gabapentin, an anti-seizure medication. These drugs have been approved by the FDA individually but not in combination – and not for treating drug addiction!

  • [From Star Magazine print edition, November 5, 2007]

    There is only anecdotal evidence that this treatment works for addicts, and Star quotes several doctors as saying it’s dangerous and likening it to “snake oil” treatments.

    It sounds questionable to me, and there are drugs that are approved for addicts like antabuse and naltrexone that might be a better choice for Lindsay. Since I have no medical background I am not qualified to make a judgment about it though.

    What bothers me is that she’s been given so many chances and is still getting high-paid roles, even with these rules that constitute baby sitting. She should have pissed away any chance she had at a career by now, and I hope that this movie tanks. Maybe I should be giving her credit for staying sober for this long, but when there are so many struggling young actresses who are more deserving and less full of shit than Lindsay, why should she be given yet another break?

    Lohan is shown out shopping on 10/29/07, thanks to Splash News.

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